The Kansas City Chiefs opened their 2005 training camp in River Falls, Wisconsin on Thursday. They have trained there since 1991. They opened camp without their first round draft pick, linebacker Derrick Johnson of Texas.
Vermeil wasn’t blown away by the first practice saying, “It was alright. It stared slow and got better.” He called it a “typical first day.”
But “typical” in 2005 is better than it was years ago, thanks to mini-camps and organized team activities (OTA’s), according to Vermeil.
“It’s so different than it used to be, when you didn’t have all that time with your players and the players are so disciplined, for the most part,” said Vermeil. He said he’s impressed with how many players continue to work out and prepare for training camp, as opposed to slacking off and relaxing. Once training camp rolls around Vermeil said the players “…jump right in and get going full speed again”.
With Julian Battle out for the season and Eric Warfield serving a four-game suspension, the Chiefs addressed their needs at cornerback on Thursday by signing free agent Dwayne Washington on. Washington, who is entering his 12th year in the NFL, started all 16 games for the Jaguars in 2004 and made 86 tackles. He also intercepted two passes and picked up a fumble.
Washington was a first-round draft pick by the Minnesota Vikings out of North Carolina St. in 1994 and spent the first four seasons of his career there. He then played six seasons in Pittsburgh before signing with the Jaguars last year. In his 11 seasons, he’s missed just one game.
Head coach Dick Vermeil also announced that Dexter McCleon will start, along with Patrick Surtain, as a starting cornerback until Warfield returns from his suspension.